Covid ‘is natural disaster’ as US has more cases in month than most countries in year
November saw a huge surge in coronavirus cases across the US (Image: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
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The coronavirus pandemic has been branded a "natural disaster" after the US recorded more cases in November alone than most other countries all year.
And public health experts are predicting record-breaking numbers in December.
More than 4 million new infections emerged this month – superseding all other countries bar India which recorded 9.4million and Brazil, which saw 6.3million.
Covid has killed a total of 267,000 in the States, with 13.3 million official cases since the start of the year, according to new figures released by Johns Hopkins University.
The country's fatalities make up 20 percent of the world's total – in comparison, the UK – which is among the nation's with the biggest virus numbers – has seen 58,448 deaths and 1.6million cases.
Millions of Americans rejected advice to avoid travel during Thanksgiving
(Image: Getty Images)
UK coronavirus daily death toll drops to 205 as infections continue downward trend
UK coronavirus hospital death toll rises by 199 as infections drop in England
Top US infectious disease doctor Anthony Fauci has warned another surge is due after millions of Americans ignored advice to avoid travelling for Thanksgiving.
He told ABC News' This Week programme on Sunday: "We may see a surge upon a surge.
"We don't want to frighten people, but that's just the reality."
Dr Anthony Fauci
(Image: Getty Images)
Over the weekend, the number of people traveling through US airports reached its highest since mid-March overwhelming hospital systems and pushing already exhausted medical staff near a breaking point.
Emergency medicine physician Dr Megan Ranney, meanwhile, said yesterday: "There’s no way that the hospitals can be fully prepared for what we’re currently facing.
"This is like a natural disaster occurring in all 50 states at the same time. There are not adequate beds. There are no adequate staff. And because of the lack of national preparation, there are still no adequate supplies."
Dr Megan Ranney
More than half of the 50 states reported their highest daily Covid death toll on November 24 – the deadliest day since May, with over 2,100 virus deaths nationwide.
Fears of a fresh surge come as a top government official said yesterday some Americans could begin receiving coronavirus vaccinations before Christmas.
US Health Secretary Alex Azar said Pfizer Inc's Covid-19 vaccine could be authorised and shipped within days of a December 10 meeting of outside advisers to the Food and Drug Administration tasked with reviewing trial data and recommending whether it warrants approval.
A vaccine from Moderna Inc could follow a week later, he said, after the company announced on Monday it would apply for US and European emergency authorisation.
Final trial data showed the vaccine to be 94.1 percent effective at preventing Covid-19, comparable with Pfizer's results.
"So we could be seeing both of these vaccines out and getting into people's arms before Christmas," Azar said on CBS' 'This Morning'.